Picking up where Still Life (Talking) leaves off (instead of throwing listeners a curve ball like Song X), the equally triumphant Letter from Home stresses Brazilian elements with superb results. While a number of these treasures including "Beat 70," "Have You Heard," and "Every Summer Night" are light and accessible enough to have enjoyed exposure on some smooth jazz stations, Letter contains the type of depth and honesty that's sorely lacking in most smooth jazz. Metheny has always known the difference between light and lightweight, and even at his most delicate, he avoids entering "Muzak" territory.
Uno de los nombres destacados de la nueva generación de guitarristas flamencos, Santiago Lara, jerezano de 32 años, tiene ya prestigiosos premios como el de la Bienal de Sevilla y el 2º Premio Nacional de Arte Flamenco de Córdoba (2013). Productor, compositor y director musical, Santiago ha participado en las grabaciones del maestro Manolo Sanlúcar, así como en sus giras con orquesta. También es responsable de la música de la bailaora Mercedes Ruiz, a quien acompaña en sus giras mundiales. Como productor, además de sus primeros dos álbumes, Santiago ha realizado tres discos para cantaores de la nueva generación como son José Lara, Londro y David Lagos. Desde la vibrante versión de 'Minuano', que abre el álbum con la participación de Jorge Pardo o la vertiginosa 'James' con Antonio Serrano, emociona redescubrir un repertorio que ya abarca casi 40 años con un respeto y una creatividad que hacen honor al título.
When Metheny celebrates his cerebral side, he usually follows up with something more accessible. After his difficult yet rewarding collaboration with John Scofield, I Can See Your House from Here, Metheny stresses accessibility with this captivating live album. The primary focus is on his Brazilian-influenced material from Still Life (Talking) and Letter from Home, and the very cohesive Pat Metheny Group offers characteristically expressive versions of such favorites as "Have You Heard," "Beat 70," and "Better Days Ahead." While he could have offered a wider variety of material and perhaps revisited some of his early gems, everything that he does include comes across as honest and heartfelt. Thankfully, Metheny's emphasis on accessibility and crowd-pleasing doesn't come at the expense of his artistic integrity.
Originally released in 2002 in Europe and Japan, Upojenie (Ecstasy) is a collaboration between Pat Metheny and superstar Polish vocalist Anna Maria Jopek. It came into being after Jopek approached the guitarist at a jazz festival in Warsaw in 2001. Her original idea was to perform some of her own work, some of Metheny's, and some Polish folk songs (exactly what happened). The collaboration was recorded over four months in Poland; it is something wholly other than the sum of its parts might suggest. Co-produced by composer Marcin Kydrynski (Jopek's husband) and Metheny.